Saturday, June 27, 2015

Social Scorn, or Laughter Before the Lions

In response to the Supreme Court's recent decision legalizing same-sex marriage in all fifty states there has been and will continue to be commentary on this decision and its import for our time.

David French over National Review has written a short piece entitled The Supreme Court Ratifies a New Civic Religion that is Incompatible with Christianity which contains the following profound lines:
For many believers, this new era will present a unique challenge. Christians often strive to be seen as the “nicest” or “most loving” people in their communities. Especially among Evangelicals there is a na├»ve belief that if only we were winsome enough, kind enough, and compassionate enough, the culture would welcome us with open arms. But now our love — expressed in the fullness of a Gospel that identifies homosexual conduct as sin but then provides eternal hope through justification and sanctification — is hate. Christians who’ve not suffered for their faith often romanticize persecution. They imagine themselves willing to lose their jobs, their liberty, or even their lives for standing up for the Gospel. Yet when the moment comes, at least here in the United States, they often find that they simply can’t abide being called “hateful.” It creates a desperate, panicked response. “No, you don’t understand. I’m not like those people — the religious right.” Thus, at the end of the day, a church that descends from apostles who withstood beatings finds itself unable to withstand tweetings. Social scorn is worse than the lash.
I have often stated that today's Christians in America will have to face laughter long before they face the lions.  This social scorn is powerful and will prove "persuasive" (not in the rational sense of being persuaded by argumentation) in the lives of many.  There will the temptation to change or, at least, mute the teaching of Scripture regarding sexual ethics.  Faithfulness to Christ will mean bearing this social scorn.